How to buy real estate in Italy

I’ve been doing some research as I plan for my retirement in Italy and I’ve found what I think is reliable information on buying real estate in Italy. If you don’t have any interest in buying property in Italy I understand. Here’s a traveler’s account of his vacation in Rome with pictures and historical information thrown in. You can read that and skip my notes on buying Italian real estate. That site is on a free web page, and sometimes so many people visit the sites I link to that they shut down. If that link goes down, it’s because too many people tried to visit…

Buying real estate in Italy all starts with a proposal of purchase or proposta. This is a firm offer on the property and the buyer puts 1% of the purchase price into escrow (deposito fiduciario). The estate agent is responsible for this deposit (assuming the offer is accepted).

Then comes the preliminary purchase contract or preliminare

This is the contract, a promise to buy. 10 – 20 percent of the purchase price is deposited.

Then the notary checks the paperwork and after about a month, the final contract, rogito notarile, is signed in the notary’s office. The seller gets all the money and the buyer gets the deeds and keys to the property.

Finally, there are some taxes which I don’t quite understand. I think they are 3 or 4 percent depending on the seller. Then there are the real estate agent’s fees (3 percent + the tax) and the notary’s fees.

Sorry if this one was boring for you. It means a lot to me, so I hope you don’t mind too much.

Filed Under: Vacation property

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Comments (5)

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  1. Yvette says:

    Do you know if an American can buy real estate in Italy? What are their laws against foreigners purchasing Italian land?

  2. Francesco says:

    Think twice before moving to Italy.I left my country in 1969 and that was the best decision of

    my life!Did you see the results of last elections?Now we have (they have) the great pleasure of having a comunist person as president

    of the chamber of representatives.Good luck!


  3. el pupo says:

    One practical question: what about visas? Do property owners have a special track for applying to resident alien visa in Italy?

  4. Alan says:

    how are the prices of property in Italy as to the U.S. and how is the exchange rate.

  5. James Trotta says:

    They use the Euro in Italy, so the exchange rate isn’t so great for Americans.

    Regarding visas, I’m sure I’ll need one. I’ll probably have an immigration lawyer handle that (I’ve learned from my wife’s green card that immigration matters can be a pain).

    Regarding politics, I’m not usre how much I’d care about Italian politics. Here in Korea, I don’t worry about Korean politics much…

    Thanks for all the comments!

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